Lead Performer: National Renewable Energy Laboratory – Golden, CO
-- CanmetENERGY – Ottawa, Ontario
-- ADL Ventures – San Francisco, CA
-- Trimble – Sunnyvale, CA
-- TruDesign – Knoxville, TN
DOE Total Funding: $498,348
Cost Share: $217,000
Project Term: 18 months
Funding Type: Advanced Building Construction FOA Award

As part of the ABC FOA topic Integrated Building Retrofits, this project is one of a cohort of Phase 1 projects that will design and prototype a technology or approach that provides a deep energy-saving retrofit solution for one or more building energy systems. Once completed, BTO will conduct a competitive review of this project, along with all Phase 1 projects, to down-select recipients for Phase 2 awards that focus on a whole-building deep energy retrofit solution. Phase 2 awardees will develop and field-validate their retrofit solution from Phase 1 on at least two occupied, operational buildings.

Project Objective

This project will develop a novel streamlined, automated software workflow for the specification, manufacturing, and installation of panelized overclad retrofits for existing low-and mid-rise wood-framed buildings in the United States. While panelized overclad retrofit systems are available today, significant one-off effort is required for each building to measure and specify a retrofit, and at the installation stage, further one-off fabrication is required to finish the connections between the existing structure and the new facade.

This novel software workflow will support the automated specification of the panels and the finishing components to be fabricated off-site, eliminating the need for one-size custom fabrication. The project team will work to develop an approach to retrofitting that is easily adapted, rapidly scalable, and cost-effective, particularly for the 55% of the residential housing stock that was built before 1980.

In sum, this project seeks to:

  • Increase energy efficiency and durability by improving measurement precision and panel fit
  • Reduce retrofit costs by reducing labor hours at each stage in the project lifecycle
  • Reduce occupant disruption by reducing retrofit time using precisely dimensioned panels and finishing components

Project Impact

The successful development and commercialization of this software and manufacturing workflow will lead to a 50% reduction in envelope retrofit installation cost and labor compared to today’s conventional practices. In addition, this project has the potential to reduce site energy use intensity by at least 15 kBtu per square foot. The project team estimates that the technical potential energy savings of the system is 3.3 Quads.


DOE Technology Manager: Sven Mumme
Lead Performer: Chioke Harris, National Renewable Energy Laboratory